The Curfew Ends – For Now

I can go out tonight if I like, though I don’t why I would want to. There’s nothing to do here.

A court has overridden the 8 p.m. to 5 a.m. curfew imposed by the state of Baden-Wurttembeg that has been in place for a couple of months. Apparently someone saw reason.

Scientifically there is, as I understand it, no proof a curfew will stop the spread of a virus in a pandemic. It is merely an expression of government overreach.

I understand that. Politicians are scared. So are a lot of people, but politicians are triply scared.

First, they are scared for themselves and their families. Sometimes people catch COVID-19, despite having done everything right. Sometimes people die.

Most politicians I’ve met have an underdeveloped understanding of the metaphysical. That means they are afraid of dying – they have no idea what to expect in the next life; they just know that if there is one they are unprepared.

Second, they fear for their constituents. We look to the state to solve a lot of our problems. A year of pandemic has taught us that politicians aren’t as competent as they led us to believe. They aren’t as effective as expected, at least not in a pandemic. The state has failed, and they know it.

This frustrates the politicians as much as the citizens. They aren’t used to not being able to effect change. They aren’t used to feeling like they have no control.

So they overreact. They bring in harsh measures to stop the spread of the virus. When that doesn’t work they bring in harsher measures. They want to do something, even if it is logically apparent their moves will be ineffective.

They want to be seen as doing something. Anything. Because there is an election just around the corner, and if people don’t think they are doing something then they have to fear for their jobs. What are a few civil liberties when your job is on the line? If you message it right, people may not notice.

Now a court has in effect told the state: show us the science. The state couldn’t, and the curfew is no more. It might come back – but only if COVID-19 cases reach a certain threshold.

And even then, I wonder if they will first have to prove that curfews really do have an impact on transmission rates.

Lifting the curfew will have no effect on me. As I said, I have nowhere I plan to go at night. I do have a Bible study I attend at church once a week – but the church provided me with a note that allowed me to be out after the curfew for that purpose. And I was never stopped.

I am hoping that citizens in other countries will also demand accountability from their governments. Too often I read about civil rights being curtailed during this pandemic because politicians are scared, and have convinced the people they should be scared too,.

Now, when they are tempted to expand their powers beyond the confines of the law, is not the time to be taking politicians at their word. Come to think of it, should we ever do that?

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